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Nuclear powered CO2 capture from the atmosphere

Authors

  • Steven R. Sherman

    Corresponding author
    1. Hydrogen and Alternative Energy Programs Department, Savannah River National Laboratory, Aiken, SC 29808
    • Hydrogen and Alternative Energy Programs Department, Savannah River National Laboratory, Aiken, SC 29808
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Abstract

A process for capturing CO2 from the atmosphere was recently proposed. This process uses a closed cycle of sodium and calcium hydroxide, carbonate, and oxide transformations to capture dilute CO2 from the atmosphere and to generate a concentrated stream of CO2 that is amenable to sequestration or subsequent chemical transformations. In one of the process steps, a fossil-fueled lime kiln is needed, which reduces the net CO2 capture of the process. It is proposed to replace the fossil-fueled lime kiln with a modified kiln heated by a high-temperature nuclear reactor. This will have the effect of eliminating the use of fossil fuels for the process and increasing the net CO2 capture. Although the process is suitable to support sequestration, the use of a nuclear power source for the process provides additional capabilities, and the captured CO2 may be combined with nuclear-produced hydrogen to manufacture liquid fuels via Fischer-Tropsch synthesis or other technologies. Conceivably, such plants would be carbon-neutral and could be placed virtually anywhere without being tied to fossil fuel sources or geological sequestration sites. © 2009 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Environ Prog, 2009

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